(1879 - 1892)
Prince of captains
Topsy Waldron is Norwood’s longest serving on-field leader. Between 1881 and 1892, when he was at his brilliant best around the ball, he was captain for 10 seasons, six of those for premierships. Also known as “the prince of dodgers”, Topsy led South Australia before he led Norwood.
A product of Carlton, he grew to love Norwood so much that in his later years the tears would flow after a Redlegs win. Topsy had his differences with officials, but his heart was in the right place. And Topsy could play.
In 1887 the Norwood captain had the footy smarts to take full advantage of a new long-kicking, running style of game from Victoria. His team took the title that year and the next, when it successfully challenged the Victorian premier South Melbourne to become Champions of Australia. Topsy had beaten the best from his home State at their own game, and had become the first Norwood legend.
Previously it was thought that Topsy shared the captaincy record of nine years with Garry McIntosh. Hall of Fame research this year unearthed one more, 1885, for Topsy. But Norwood’s most enduring leaders remain the Hall of Fame’s oldest player member, and its youngest.
Premierships: 1879 - 83, 1887 - 89
Premiership captain: 1881 - 83, 1887 - 89
Captain: 1881 - 85, 1887 - 90, 1892
Further honours: Norwood Player Life Member, SANFL Hall of Fame, Champions of Australia captain 1888, SA captain 1880 - 81, 1890, SA games 6